South Africa, Development Research (SA GER CDR)

CALL FOR APPLICATIONS: 2nd DAAD Centers for African Excellence Alumni Conference – send your abstract until June 15th 2018


2nd DAAD Centers for African Excellence Alumni Conference

Accra, Ghana, 06th – 09th November 2018

Abstract submission until June 15th 2018

Sustainable Development in Africa: The Role of Science and Education

The promotion of sustainable development is the result of an unprecedented global consensus about the need to foster economic development in ways that reduce poverty and inequality, to enhance political participation and good governance, without destroying the natural environment that forms the substrate of human life, taking into account both the needs of current and future generations. The ideals encompassed in the original formulation of the concept are broadly shared in public discourse and among important political institutions, as demonstrated by the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Many academic institutions, as well as individual researchers, conduct research, design curricula, and train students in order to generate the required knowledge and professional expertise to transform public policies towards sustainable development. The DAAD Centers of Excellence in Sub-Saharan Africa agree on the importance of promoting sustainable development and advance sustainability through:

  • Research, producing innovative knowledge, approaches, and technologies helping to attain sustainable development
  • Training highly qualified professionals who can contribute to sustainable development working in multiple sectors within and outside of universities
  • Engaging in outreach activities promoting the DAAD Centers’ results, products and alumni

Since the nexus between the DAAD centers and their contribution to Africa’s sustainable development has not yet been explicitly addressed, we would like to invite you to the Second DAAD African Centers of Excellence Alumni Conference, which will address the topic Sustainable Development in Africa: The Role of Science and Education.

The Conference will be held in Accra, Ghana from 06th to 9th November 2018 at the Institute of Statistical, Social and Economic Research (ISSER), based in the University of Ghana, Legon. The 2nd DAAD Centers for African Excellence Alumni Conference results from a collaboration between ISSER, the Ghanaian-German Center for Development Studies (GGCDS), and the ISSER/GGCDS Alumni Network (IGAN).

We are interested in the experiences and contributions that the DAAD Centers of African Excellence have made towards the promotion of sustainability through their research, but also through the expertise they bring to bear in their professional practice. We also want to discuss where the alumni see additional potential for promotion of sustainable development by the centers. Thus the contributions should address the following questions:

  • How has/can your research contributed/contribute to sustainable development?
  • How can/does the training received at the centers contribute to your professional practice in promoting sustainable development?
  • How could the centers further enhance students’ capabilities towards the promotion of sustainable development?
  • How can interdisciplinary cooperation between the African Centers of Excellence help to enhance sustainable development?

While focusing on sustainable development in general, we are interested in fostering (interdisciplinary) discussions that relate to the many facets of sustainability addressed in the various centers:

  • Science, knowledge production and education
  • Logistics, economic development and financial inclusion
  • Natural resources governance and mineral extraction
  • Governance and law
  • Agriculture, rural development and rural-urban transformation
  • Migration and social mobility

The conference will be organized in thematic workshops. In these workshops the core questions outlined will be addressed. The output from individual workshops and the plenary discussion will be captured and compiled in a conference report. This report will detail current successes, identify capacity needs, and potential areas of future collaboration.

In order to participate, please send an abstract (not more than 500 words) of your intended presentation and a short summary of your curriculum vitae (including, if applicable, your most relevant publications). Please also indicate in which thematic workshop you would like to present your work (e.g. Science, Knowledge production and education; logistics, economic development and financial inclusion; natural resources governance and mineral extraction, etc.). Proposals shall be sent to the email addresses and with the subject “Abstract – application to the 2nd DAAD Alumni conference” until June 15th 2018. A scientific committee with members from ISSER, GGCDS and of the ISSER/GGCDS alumni network will select the participants based on the quality of their proposal, their academic and professional activities, and the thematic pertinence of their contribution. Gender balance and diversity among participants (including all DAAD centers for African Excellence) will also be considered.

For those alumni presenting their work in the conference tickets for international travel, catering and accommodation in Accra will be provided.

See the attached file for the tentative program: Alumni Conference 2018-Call for applications

West African Center for Sustainable Transformation (WAC-SRT), Update April 2018

Bonn, April 2018. The West African Center for Sustainable Transformation (WAC-SRT) is one of eight Centers of African Excellence funded by the German Academic Exchange Service DAAD under the “Aktion Afrika” initiative of the German Federal Foreign Office.

What is the WAC-SRT and what does it want to achieve?

Established in 2017, WAC-SRT has been developing interdisciplinary, transnational research and teaching programs. The Center aims at generating expertise, applicable technological solutions, locally adapted business models and development management approaches for sustainable rural development and political stability in West Africa.  To do so, the center enhances research and teaching capacities as well as the infrastructure of three African partner faculties at universities in Niger and Ghana, which are addressing natural science/engineering, agribusiness and rural economics, as well as development governance, respectively.

Partner institutions are the Center for Development Research (ZEF) at the University Bonn, Germany, the Institute for Statistical Social and Economic Research (ISSER) at the University of Ghana /Legon, the Faculty of Planning and Land Management as well as the Faculty of Agribusiness and Communication Science at the University of Development Studies (UDS) in Wa/Tamale (Ghana), and the Faculty of Science and Technology at the Université Abdou Moumouni (UAM) in Niamey (Niger).

Activities since kick-off:

Since its inception the WAC-SRT has focused on the enhancement of academic infrastructure at the partner faculties in Ghana and Niger where lecture halls and project offices were rehabilitated and newly furnished. Additionally, computer labs and E-learning equipment was procured and installed.

Nearby Niamey, the WAC-SRT has built a demonstration site for renewable energy generation and improved water supply. It consists of a photovoltaic power station and is equipped with a borehole including pumps for domestic and irrigation water supplies. The station will be used for research purposes and to train government and NGO staff promoting decentralized renewable energy generation and water supply infrastructure.

In Ghana, the curricula of two master programs at UDS (M.Phil. in Development Management and M.Phil. in Agricultural Economics) were reviewed. In Niger, a new interdisciplinary master program in Sustainable Rural Transformation was designed and accredited at the UAM. Calls for admission for all three master programs have been published and 18 students will be supported with DAAD scholarships from September 2018.

Currently, WAC-SRT is organizing capacity building programs for administrative and academic staff of the African partner institutes. The trainings are organized by ISSER and are held in Accra. The focus lies on data management and E-Learning for administrative staff, while academics will be trained in academic writing as well as poverty measurement and analysis.

Vice Dean visiting Bonn:

As part of the academic networking within WAC-SRT, Samuel Bonye, the vice dean of the Faculty of Planning and Land Management (UDS), is visiting ZEF from April to June 2018. During his visit he makes use of ZEF’s academic infrastructure to work on his study of “Multi Stakeholder Players in the Land Sector in Peri-Urban Wa; competition, conflict complementarity?”, that he will present and discuss with colleagues at ZEF in May.

NGCL hosts handing over ceremony of 5 scholarships for the Master of Logistics and Supply Chain

The Namibian German Centre for Logistics (NGCL) hosted the handing over ceremony of five (5) scholarships for the Master of Logistics and Supply Chain. The scholarships are offered annually by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) as part of the African Excellence initiative, since 2009. These scholarships are the driving force behind stimulating home-grown Namibian students and professionals to pursue logistics and transportation at master’s degree level at the Namibia University of Science and Technology (NUST).

The event took place at the NUST Hotel School, on the 19th of April 2018.

Ms Barbara Liebel, the DAAD representative to Namibia delivered the keynote and emphasised the mandate of DAAD and its support through the different centres across Africa, highlighting NGCL as the only in the field of logistics.

The Vice Chancellor highlighted on the NGCL being a vital part of NUST by linking the academic and private sector to develop skills and drive research in logistics.

NGCL is an all-in-one excellence institute, combining education, research and consulting in logistics. The Centre is based on a cooperation between the NUST and Flensburg University of Applied Sciences, Germany.

Calls for Application: Master Programs of the NEW West African Center for Sustainable Rural Transformation (WAC-SRT) in Ghana and Niger, 2018

Dear colleagues,

since last November the West African Center for Sustainable Rural Transformation (WAC-SRT) has joined the African Excellence initiative. It is run in collabotration between the Center for Development Research (ZEF) University of Bonn, Germany, the Université Abdou Moumouni (UAM) in Niamey, Niger, the University for Development Studies (UDS), Wa and Tamale, Ghana and Institute for Social and Economic Research (SSER) of the University of Ghana. For more information see:

Apart from the enhancement of research and teaching infrastructure, capacity building, academic networking it also provides stipends for master students in three new/reviewed master programs addressing sustainable rural transformation from and inter/multidisciplinary perspective:

  • Integrated Master Program in Sustainable Transformation of Rural Areas (Faculty of Science and Technology, UAM (M. Sc.)
  • Master Program in Development Management, Faculty of Planning and Land Management, UDS, Wa (M. Phil.)
  • Master Program in Agricultural Economics, Faculty of Agribusiness and Communication Science, UDS, Tamale (M. Phil)

The calls are open for ainternational applicants. Deadline for application is the 31.05.2018

Please find links to the the respective calls below.

Best regards.

Wolfram Laube

Advert DAAD Scholarship 2018 MPhil Dev. Mgt


Application Call IMP-SRT


The Continuous Visit of President Omar al-Bashir of the Sudan to Uganda without Being Arrested Leaves the ICC in Dilemma

The president of the Sudan, Omar al-Bashir has consecutively visited Uganda in both May 2016 and November 2017 and returned to his country without being arrested. president Omar al-Bashir is wanted by the International Criminal Court for war crimes and crimes against humanity allegedly committed in the Darfur region.

Uganda as a member state to the Rome statute is obligated to arrest president Omar al-Bashir on sight in Uganda but has always defied the ICC.

From these developments we may realize that;
1. the ICC’s dependency on individual state cooperation leaves it ineffective
2. the absence of international law enforcing institutions in individual states cripples its would be strength especially in arresting fugitives.
3. Africa seems to have become hostile to the ICC’s operations and the hostility is likely to keep growing.
4. The ICC needs to re-strategize on enforcement measures of the Rome Statute.
5. Probably, indicting those who fail to arrest fugitives present in their states to the ICC will force them to choose between inviting fugitives to their countries or effect the arrest so that they are not arrested.
6. The rate of non-cooperation from member states is a serious set-back for international and transnational criminal justice

NEW DAAD Sur-Place Stipend Program for the Ghanaian-German Center for Development Studies

The Ghanaian-German Center for Development Studies (GGCDS) is a DAAD Center of African Excellence established at the University of Ghana in collaboration between ZEF and the Institute for Statistical, Social and Economic Research (ISSER). Since its inception in 2008, the GGCDS has successfully established a PhD program in Development Studies and promoted academic exchange and research collaborations between German and African partners.

As an important step to ensure the sustainability of the GGCDS, the DAAD has selected ISSER as host institution for part of its West African Sur-Place/in-Region stipend program. Beginning in 2017, three batches of seven students from Ghana and other African countries will be sponsored for four years each to obtain their PhD in Development Studies. The current program runs until 2022 but can be prolonged after a successful evaluation in 2019.


The objective of the DAAD Sur-Place/In-Region scholarship program is to train highly qualified professionals for the sustainable development of Africa and to contribute to the development of top-quality, cosmopolitan African universities.


For further information:

Call for applications – International Alumni Conference

The South African-German Centre for Development Research (SA-GER CDR) at UWC/Cape Town (South Africa) together with the Institute of Development Research and Development Policy (IEE) of Ruhr-University Bochum (Germany) is happy to host the international conference

“Tackling the root causes of displacement in Sub Sahara Africa”
taking place 26 November – 01 December 2017 in Cape Town/South Africa

Alumni of diverse study programmes at the South African-German Centre for Development Research at UWC/Cape Town, the Ghanaian-German Centre for Development Studies at the University of Ghana, the Tanzanian-German Centre for Eastern African Legal Studies at the University of Dar es Salaam, the Namibian-German Centre for Logistics at Namibia University of Science and Technology/Windhoek, the South African-German Centre for Transnational Criminal Justice at UWC/Cape Town, the Congolese-German Centre for Microfinance at the Congo Protestant University/Kinshasa, the East and South African-German Centre for Educational Research at the Moi-University/Eldoret (Kenya) and the Kenyan Centre for Mining, Environmental Engineering and Resource Management at Taita Taveta University College/Voi are invited to participate at the conference, contributing actively by sharing their experiences and knowledge concerning the abovementioned points of interest.

On four days, approximately 50 conference participants – practitioners, researchers and students – will discuss different aspects of the topic, introduced by invited speakers of relevant organizations (UNHCR, IOM) who will present the current status and consequences of displacement in Sub-Sahara Africa and reflect on the role of (regular and irregular) migration in relation to displacement. The African Excellence Centres will introduce their areas of expertise and their link to the conference topic and will integrate their recent research activities and the professional experience of participating Alumni.

The conference is financed by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD) with funds of the German Ministry of Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ).

For more information please have a look at the detailed Call.
For inquiries, please refer to Britta Niklas (

New Publications at the South African-German Centre for Development Research


Davison Muchadenyika, PhD candidate at the SA-GER CDR published a new paper titled ‘Multi-Donor Trust Funds and Fragile States: Assessing the Aid Effectiveness of the Zimbabwe Multi-Donor Trust Fund’.

Research for this paper was largely conducted during Davison worked on his Master thesis for the Bochum Programme of Development Management.

Davison is one of the most active PhD students regarding puplications and already published 3 papers in 2015:

Muchadenyika, D. 2015. Land for Housing: A Political Resource – Reflections from Zimbabwe’s urban areas. Journal of Southern African Studies, 41 (6): 1219-1238.

Muchadenyika, D. 2015. Women Struggles and Large-scale Diamond Mining in Marange, Zimbabwe. The Extractive Industries and Society, 2 (2015): 714-721.

Muchadenyika, D. 2015. Slum Upgrading and Inclusive Municipal Governance in Harare, Zimbabwe: New Perspectives for the Urban Poor. Habitat International, 48 (2015): 1-10.


Musings on my visit to Flensburg University of Applied Sciences

Visiting the Centre for Business and Technology in Africa at the Flensburg University of Applied Sciences is akin to making a pilgrimage to “the north”. Arriving

Dr. Kenneth instilling knowledge
Dr. Kenneth instilling knowledge

at my destination in this historic city at the tip of the Flensburger Förde, I couldn’t help but think it as a convenient gate away from Windhoek. As if reading my mind, my host made a point of reminding me how lucky I was to arrive when it wasn’t raining. Apparently, the skies had conspired to give me a rare reception for this time of the year.

The reason for visiting this northern Germany city of 60,000 ± inhabitants was to teach in the Centre for Business and Technology in Africa Autumn School. In my briefing it has been made clear that participating in this exchange program is a ritual for new NGCL staff and therefore part and parcel of my job description. But, having been here and met students, faculty as well as the University management, I would definitely recommend it to anyone else. That said, I didn’t have to wait long after arriving before getting down to business and being introduced to the learners. In less than 24 hours I was amongst a lively group comprising German, Kenyan and Namibian students. Through DAAD and their scholarships the Namibian students had made their way to Flensburg and where gaining valuable international experience and education. Despite it being a cold and wet Saturday morning, the students showed up, and on time! The discussion in this first encounter revolved around etiquette and culture, was led by my host, Janntje Böhlke-Itzen.

Next was an invitation to present a “Management Case Study” in Prof. Thomas Schmidt’s class. This was a scheduled single three-hour session and therefore I had to make a decision whether or not to use all three cases I had prepared – a rural-, urban- or regional-scale African case. After presenting the situated facts of the case to the learners as told by the businesswomen themselves (i.e., using photovisual), the students were then given tasks to carry out. Split into three groups, they were discussed and presented (a) challenges the enterprises face, (b) how those challenges were likely to change? (c) Solutions to address identified problems, and (d) how they would you go about implementing their solutions?

The discussions followed by presentations of their ideas proved a very effective learning experience for the German students since this was new to most of them. The tasks and activities gave the everyone involved the opportunity to develop and share their ideas, applying their diverse knowledge and experiences to solving practical business and technology problems in Africa. This was a strong testament to the relevance of both the Autumn School and the Centre for Business and Technology in Africa.

My third and final dialogue with the learners was at a seminar on culture and etiquette, which turned out to be a very engaging experience for the learners as well as myself and my host. Building on the theoretical foundations of intercultural experiences developed by Janntje at the first seminar referred to earlier, this last session delved into culture as practice. Through open communication and dialogue, we explored topics such as scholarship as acculturation, plagiarism: ethical dilemma on campuses, supervisor-student relationship, driving behaviour, dress code, et cetera, using multiple (German, Kenyan and Namibian) social and cultural contexts. In the final analysis, the take home from this visit to Flensburg University of Applied Sciences is that such exchanges are more than symbolic. Their true significance lies in the deeper learning experiences they engender.

New Scholarship holders selected for the intake 2017!

Protests at South African Universities

For the intake 2017 the selection committee of the SA-GER CDR selected 4 Master and 2 Phd Students out of 230 Master and 196 PhD applications to commence their studies at the South African-German Centre for Development Research in January 2017.

We hope that they will be able to start their studies in january 2017 in time, as current scholarship holders are severly affected by the student protests against the rais of student fees at South African Universities (8% increase was announced by the government) and the closure of the University of the Western Cape (UWC). UWC, like many other universities in South Africa, closed  in order to avoid violent riots.


Photo by Ashraf Hendricks
Photo by Ashraf Hendricks

On the other hand a lot of students and as well parents demonstrate for the (re)opening of universities.
We hope that universities will open again soon and that the „fee problem“ will be solved in due time.